We Do Not Agree On the Meaning Of Our Partnership Agreement—What are Our Options?
Every business partnership in Florida needs a well-drafted partnership agreement in place. The agreement is effectively a contract that helps to form the foundation of the business relationship, including setting up the rights and obligations of each business partner. Of course, even with a strong partnership agreement, disputes can still arise.
What happens if you and your business partner do not agree on the meaning of a partnership agreement? Within this article, our West Palm Beach partnership dispute attorney highlights the key things to know about your options if you and your business partner cannot agree on the meaning of key terms within your partnership agreement.
Carefully Review the Partnership Agreement, Gather Evidence to Support Your Position
Every disagreement starts with a thorough understanding of the disputed areas. In the case of a partnership agreement, it is essential to meticulously review all clauses and definitions, with a keen focus on those areas causing contention. You may find that ambiguous language or vagueness is the root cause of the disagreement. Gather any supporting documents, emails, meeting minutes, or other materials that can help bolster your interpretation.
Consider All Options for Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
Before escalating the matter to a courtroom, you may want to consider Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) methods. ADR encompasses strategies like negotiation, mediation, or arbitration to settle disputes outside the court system. These options can save both time and money, and often help preserve relationships that might otherwise be strained by a legal battle.
In negotiation, partners may try to reach a mutually beneficial agreement. Mediation involves a neutral third-party who guides discussion and facilitates understanding but does not impose a solution. Another option is arbitration. It involves a neutral arbitrator who, after hearing both sides, makes a binding decision. The method chosen depends on the nature of the dispute, the partnership’s dynamics, and the partners’ willingness to compromise.
Be Ready to Escalate the Matter to Protect Your Personal and Professional Interests
When ADR methods don’t yield results, or if the dispute severely threatens your personal or professional interests, be prepared to escalate the matter legally. Litigation can be time-consuming, expensive, and potentially damaging to your professional relationship, but it may be the only way to resolve severe disagreements. Before proceeding, consult with an attorney who specializes in partnership disputes to understand your chances of success and the possible outcomes. Remember, in cases involving disputes over partnership agreements, litigation should generally be the last resort when all other options have failed.
Speak to a Partnership Dispute Attorney in West Palm Beach, FL
At Pike & Lustig, LLP, our West Palm Beach partnership dispute lawyer has the legal and professional experience that you can count on in even the most complex of cases. If you and your business partner do not agree on the meaning or implications of your partnership agreement, we are here to help. From our legal office in West Palm Beach, we provide commercial dispute representation in Palm Beach County and throughout all of South Florida.